The United Nations war crimes tribunal has upheld the prison sentences of two Bosnian Croats convicted of crimes against humanity three years ago.

An appeals panel of the Hague tribunal confirmed Wednesday the sentences of Mladen Naletilic and Vinko Martinovic. The court found them guilty of persecution, torture and the explusion of Muslims from the area around Mostar in Bosnia-Herzegovina more than a decade ago. It sentenced Naletilic to 20 years in prison and Martinovic to 18 years.

The court said the sentences were "within the range a reasonable trial chamber could have ordered."

During the Bosnian conflict of the 1990s, Naletilic was commander of a Croat military unit, known as the Convicts Battalion. Martinovic commanded a sub-unit.

The War Crimes Tribunal has charged more than 150 people for crimes committed during the conflicts in the former Yugoslavia.

Some information for this report was provided by AP and Reuters.